Ethnobotany Journal

Ethnobotany Research and Applications is an electronic, peer-reviewed, multi-disciplinary journal devoted to the rapid dissemination of current research. Manuscript submission, peer review, and publication are all handled on the Internet. The journal seeks manuscripts that are novel, integrative and written in ways that are accessible to a wide audience. This includes an array of disciplines (biological and social sciences) concerned particularly with theoretical questions that lead to practical applications. Articles can also be based on the perspectives of cultural practitioners, poets and others with insights into plants, people and applied research. Photo essays, methodology reviews and theoretical discussions are also published. The journal publishes original research that is described in indigenous languages. We also encourage papers that make use of the unique opportunities of an E-journal: color illustrations, animated model output, down-loadable models and data sets.

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Ethnobotany

What is Ethnobotany?

Ethnobotany is the study of how people of a particular culture and region make of use of indigenous plants. Ethnobotanists explore how plants are used for such things as food, shelter, medicine, clothing, hunting, and religious ceremonies.

Medicinal plants are extracted
at Shaman Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
Photo by Mark Tuschmanii, 1996.

Ethnobotany has its roots in botany, the study of plants. Botany, in turn, originated in part from an interest in finding plants to help fight illness. In fact, medicine and botany have always had close ties. Many of today’s drugs have been derived from plant sources. Pharmacognosy is the study of medicinal and toxic products from natural plant sources. At one time, pharmacologists researching drugs were required to understand the natural plant world, and physicians were schooled in plant-derived remedies. However, as modern medicine and drug research advanced, chemically-synthesized drugs replaced plants as the source of most medicinal agents in industrialized countries. Although research in plant sources continued and plants were still used as the basis for some drug development, the dominant interest (and resulting research funding) shifted to the laboratory.[More]

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